I recently surveyed some moms asking them “How do you do it?” with an active schedule with their children. How do you provide nutrient-dense meals that are fast? What time do you eat? When do you prep? How do you do it when your spouse or partner has the opposite schedule- so you’re on your own? What happens when you get home from work at 5:15pm with your kids and there is a piano recital at 6:15pm? How do you make a meal in under 30 minutes that actually has flavor? What happens when one child has food allergies and the others don’t? Many moms wanted more quick snack grab ideas.
What else? Moms wanted to know more about stress and anxiety in their kids. Moods their children can have, along with the mom’s mood, came up. Meltdowns in not just the toddlers but also their older children. How to balance everything without feeling overwhelmed. Self-care time. How much does a mom play with her kids, and how much do you let them figure out how to play on their own? Where is the time to do everything a mom wants to?
There are no magic answers that will work for every family but there are ways we can all share our tips so we can try something and see what works. Or what doesn’t! It’s OK if it works for your friend Sally but doesn’t work for your family. Don’t stress about it- the right path will come to you.
Today we’ll tackle a simple topic of eating healthy when your kids are busy and you’re even busier. Busy is the word that comes out of moms’ mouths the most lately where I want to take the stress out of the word. Or at least lessen it a little. Below are 5 tips I have on how to eat the best way for your family with a crazy schedule.
- Make 3 ingredient meals. Many times the simpler the meal, the healthier the meal. It doesn’t have to be gourmet to be delicious and in my opinion, it can have more flavor. I love stuffing sweet potatoes with fiber-rich ingredients like beans and peas, top off with a dollop of plain yogurt. If you’re not doing dairy, a drizzle of avocado or olive oil for a healthy fat to keep your family full for a long time. Time saver? Bake the potatoes the night prior so all you have to do is microwave them. Top with canned beans and thaw out some peas.
- Going with the above, focus on meals with high fiber, healthy fat, and clean protein and avoid the overly processed foods that will leave you and your kiddos starving. The processed foods out contain 2 things that spike your blood sugar and create the huge crash, which leads to ravenous hunger. Sugar and overly refined ingredients. So with meals, focus on these items and your child may not be hungry for a snack. If they are, focus on these items when it comes to snacking as well. And you don’t have to have typical “snack” items for a snack… why not grab some leftovers from the fridge and give a small portion of that? Why do we feel we need granola bars, crackers, and packaged items? Adding in foods that will fill & fuel your child will lessen the snack stress we all have.
- Prep on the weekends. Don’t have the time? You need to make the time and schedule it. There aren’t any excuses here and when it comes to creating healthy options for your family- this time is essential. What’s not essential? Social media time? Mindless time fillers? Sitting at a baseball game doing nothing (you can meal plan on the sidelines!)? The excuse of “I don’t have time” needs to change to “I need to find the time.” If you don’t have the desire to find the time, then I suggest you really thinking about your goals and values when it comes to your family’s health and wellness. Find a why. A reason. A necessity. Then you’ll make the time.
- Buy produce that is already chopped or frozen. Hello! Huge time saver and you and your kiddos are more likely to eat them with them already being prepped.
- When it comes to dinners for the week- Choose 3 ingredients and cook them 2 different ways. Spinach for example. One night you can have an awesome spinach pesto pasta night (in under 30 minutes with a recipe I use… I’ll be uploading recipes soon!). Space it out and another night add spinach to an egg frittata that you make (another super easy, under 30 minute recipe, that I’ll be adding!)
With all the awesome feedback I’ve been receiving from moms on what they need help with, I’ll continue addressing all these in the posts to come. For now, take in these simple tips and reach out to me if you need more help and support. I’m here for you!